Matt Lasley | GC News-Gazette The Leitchfield City Council meets in regular session on Monday night.

Matt Lasley | GC News-Gazette

The Leitchfield City Council meets in regular session on Monday night.

With the Rite Aid renovation set to begin, a tentative opening date for the new Leitchfield city hall and police department was announced this week.

During a pre-construction meeting held Monday morning, city officials were informed by Owensboro's Hartz Contracting, the general contractor hired to perform the renovation, that with work set to begin this week, the facility should be completed and ready to move into by Aug. 3 provided the project remains on schedule.

Hartz Contracting was given its official notice to proceed with the renovation during the meeting Monday morning, and monthly meetings will be held to update officials on its progress.

The renovation project is scheduled to take 210 calendar days to complete, after which, the contract with Hartz states the contractor will be required to pay liquidation/damages for the delays, city officials said.

In other city business:

*During the regular Monday Leitchfield City Council meeting, insurance agent Aubrey Beatty, who, last month, presented quotes for the city's property and general liability insurance, accused the city council of engaging in a conflict of interest following its selection of Kentucky League of Cities as its property and general liability provider.

Steve Kinkade, the insurance agent representing KLC, also serves as chairman of the Leitchfield Planning Commission, and Beatty felt it was unfair that Kinkade should be permitted to submit a proposal while also serving on a city board.

Beatty also expressed concern that the original request for property and general liability insurance was for a full year, but, when the city opted to accept insurance for six months to get in line with most other municipalities and reinsure by the fiscal year, KLC's proposed rate was less than half of what its rate for a full year would have been.

Beatty said this signifies that the bid may have been changed after the deadline for proposals had passed because half of KLC's original $213,259.94 bid would have been $106,629.97, as opposed to the $94,982.21 quote ultimately accepted by the city council.

City Councilman Billy Dallas said he had voted in favor of KLC's bid because, on the night the proposals were reviewed, they did not appear to offer the same coverage on paper, even though additional documents provided later proved that they did.

Dallas also said he was informed by city officials who reviewed the insurance proposals that the quote from Travelers, which Beatty submitted for the council's consideration, did not contain all of the same coverage as that of KLC based upon what was listed in the proposals given to them.

Following Beatty's presentation, City Councilman Clayton Miller motioned to reverse the decision to accept insurance from KLC and accept the quote from Travelers, which cost $162,627. City Councilmen Harold Miller and Raymond Cottrell voted in favor of the motion alongside Clayton Miller, while City Councilman Billy Dallas, Councilwoman Margie Decker, and City Councilman Kelly Stevenson voted against it. With a three-to-three tie, Mayor Rick Embry voted against the motion, so it did not pass.

Because of the tie, the previous vote was not reversed.

*Also during Monday's meeting, Dallas addressed the rumor that the Leitchfield City Council has discussed doing away with the city's recycling program.

He said this is not the case; rather, the council was informed by the mayor and Leitchfield Public Works Director Wesley Shull that there is a problem that must be dealt with at some point in regards to the city's making little or no money from items collected through the recycling program.

Dallas said recycling is a program the city loves providing.

"We're going to do everything in our power to keep it going," he said.

City Councilman Kelly Stevenson added that, in the last six years, the city of Leitchfield has lost $1.4 million on the recycling program.

No action was taken on this matter Monday night.

NOTE: This story has been updated with a correction.